Deadly pandemic could kill millions as no country is fully prepared, scientists claim

October 28, 2019  16:32

There is no country in the world fully prepared for a new global pandemic: even developed countries will not be able to confront a pandemic, said scientists from Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security, and the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI). 

According to The Daily Mail, an outbreak of a flu-like infectious disease can spread across Earth in just 36 hours, killing tens of millions of people. An active transport system and the movement of people between countries will contribute to the rapid spread of the disease.

According to experts, only 13 countries today have the resources to at least somehow counter such an epidemic.

Experts analyzed a number of indicators, including income, border security, the health care system, political, socio-economic and environmental risk factors that may limit the response to the threat. In their opinion, the United States, UK, Holland, Australia, Canada, Thailand, Sweden, Denmark, South Korea and Finland are best prepared. And the worst are in Africa, North Korea, Yemen, Syria. Part of the problem is the low level of immunization of the local population.
'The Index, which serves as a barometer for global preparedness, is based on a central tenet: a threat anywhere is a threat everywhere. Deadly infectious diseases can travel quickly; increased global mobility through air travel means that a disease outbreak in one country can spread across the world in a matter of hours,' the report said.

These were split into 'newly emerging' and 're-emerging/resurging'. Among the former were the Ebola, Zika and Nipah viruses, and five types of flu.

And the latter included West Nile virus, antibiotic resistance, measles, acute flaccid myelitis, Yellow fever, Dengue, plague and human monkeypox.

Experts recall how much damage the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic caused when it hit a third of the world's population and claimed the lives of 50 million people.

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